Polish Briefing 26 June, 2019 9:00 am   
COMMENTS: Mateusz Gibała

Polish Briefing: “Poland is not against EU climate policy”

What goes on in Poland on the 26th of June.

Emilewicz: Poland is not against EU climate policy

Poland wants to contribute to the creation of an industrial policy of the European Union. One of its elements is a fair energy transformation. Jadwiga Emilewicz, the Minister of Entrepreneurship and Technology, emphasizes that Poland is not an opponent of the EU climate policy.

In the ministry’s position regarding the industrial policy strategy in the European Union presented today, by 2030 Poland draws attention to the use of public aid to strengthen the innovation and competitiveness of the European economy, develop the electromobility sector, increase the use of hydrogen in the economy or support the development of artificial intelligence.

– The European economy faces the loss of competitiveness and innovation that it has had for several decades. Europe must regain its leadership position – she said.

In her opinion, one of the main elements determining the future shape of EU industrial policy is fair energy transformation. – Transformation of industry and economy must be carried out fairly. One of its elements conditioning it is the understanding of environmental issues. We draw attention to certain financial instruments designed for just transformation. The Fair Energy Transformation Fund may be such an instrument – she said. In her opinion, one of the sources of its financing may be revenues from the sale of CO2 emission allowances.

Konrad Szymański, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs for European Affairs spoke in a similar tone. In his opinion, the Fair Transformation Fund can be a tool to reduce the tensions created around the discussion on climate policy. – This fund will be directed to sectors and regions for which transformation would involve high social or political costs. It is not the only instrument, but it can respond to summoning in this field – he added.

– We do not want industrial policy to lead to restrictions on the common market. It should be the backbone of EU industrial policy. We want the European champions to have an international position, but they must have equal opportunities – he added.

Referring to the provision vetoed by Poland in the conclusions of the Council of the European Union on climate neutrality by 2050, he stated that Poland cannot agree to a significant increase in climate commitments that bring colossal consequences for the state without a detailed written division map and load compensation mechanisms. – A new opening in climate policy is possible with a precise definition of the compensation system. – said Deputy Minister Szymański.

In turn, as Emilewicz pointed out, Poland does not question climate policy, but the mechanisms for its implementation must be clearly indicated. – The term fair transformation is very legitimate. For example, France produces 70 percent of its energy from nuclear power plants, so the costs of transformation for its economy or society will be much lower. We say yes for climate policy, but let us set a specific path not to cause artificial understatement of the competitiveness of the Polish economy – she argued.